Race 1: Zonta moves nearer title

Ricardo Zonta moved a step nearer to claiming the Dallara Nissan title after taking victory in the sprint race at Valencia, while championship rivals Bas Leinders and Franck Montegny hit trouble

Race 1: Zonta moves nearer title

Pole sitter Ander Vilarino got too much wheelspin at the start, which allowed Zonta to get the run from second on the grid into the lead by the first corner. Back in the pack Leinders and Montagny touched, causing the Frenchman to spin, but somehow everyone managed to avoid him. Polo Villamil spun in sympathy though, and his race was over.

Justin Wilson took advantage of the melee to move into third and the top three pulled away from the rest from there on.

Leinders race, and maybe his championship hopes, ended on lap three when he was assaulted from behind by a recovering Andre Couto, who was forced to start from the back after stalling on the grid. The Belgian's rear wing was taken off after Couto rode over the back of his Dallara under braking from Turn 2. Couto also retired after the incident.

Thereafter the race fell into a pattern. Montagny pulled a good move to take eighth, which became seventh when Antonio Garcia retired. But the leading pack were out of his reach, until, with four laps remaining the Safety Car appeared.

Tailender Victor Ordonez had spun and his car was stalled just off the racing line. The field bunched up as it was quickly removed and a lap later the racing commenced once more.

Zonta caught Vilarino knapping and pulled a comfortable lead over the start/finish line that he maintained to the end. Wilson had to fend off a concerted attack from Jonathan Cochet, but the Brit held third for a well-earned podium.

Montagny seemed unable to really push and once again settled into a distant seventh.


Ricardo Zonta Gabord 24m53.260s
Ander Vilarino Epilson by Graff +1.051s
Justin Wilson Racing Engineering +1.690s
Jonathan Cochet KTR +2.768s
Narain Karthikeyan Tata RC +5.033s
Rodrigo Sperafico Repsol Meycom +6.833s
Franck Montagny Racing Engineering +10.737s
Felix Porterio Vergani +10.911
Tuka Rocha Gabord +12.103s
Rafael Sarandess Zele +12.568s

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